Boat and mokoro excursions are a huge part of the quintessential Okavango Delta experience. With an average of 2.5 trillion litres of water flowing into the Delta each year, large parts of this incredible wilderness are inaccessible by vehicle, which is why boats and mokoros are such an essential part of what you do here.
Excursions by motorboat are obviously the easiest way to travel fairly quickly, and far into the swamps and channels of the Delta. Providing a completely different perspective to motor vehicle-based safaris, the emphasis on boating is often seeing the Delta’s rich and abundant birdlife. This is not to say, however, that other wildlife is no longer a factor. Huge bull elephants are abundant in the waterways, while rarer species like the elusive sitatunga are best seen in areas with plenty of water. Due to its impressive numbers of fish (tigerfish, tilapia, and various species of catfish can all be found here), the Okavango Delta also offers ample opportunities to head out by boat on a fishing expedition. All fishing is done on a catch-and-release basis, ensuring the continued conservation in this area.
The first thing you might ask about mokoro excursions is, ‘What actually is a mokoro?’ Well, the humble mokoro has for generations been the primary mode of transport for the people who call the Okavango Delta their home. A mokoro is simply a dugout canoe, which is propelled by pushing with a pole from the stern of the boat… much like punting! Mokoro were traditionally built from the single trunk of a large tree, but with conservation efforts in mind they are increasingly made from fibreglass. Unlike motorboat excursions, a mokoro outing is a much slower, and certainly quieter, experience. Although the distances covered are comparatively small, being on a mokoro allows you to drink in the serene beauty of what is around you. It’s also a brilliant mode of transport for avid birders, while smaller and more elusive amphibian species like the reed frog are also found here.